London Welsh ponder CAS appeal
Wed, 27 Mar 2013 17:42
We don't think the punishment meets the crime
London Welsh chief executive Tony Copsey on Wednesday said the Premiership club have not ruled out continuing their fight for justice after they failed to overturn a five-point deduction for fielding an ineligible player.
Former Welsh team manager Mike Scott falsified documents in an effort to cover up the fact he had not secured the correct visa for New Zealand-born scrumhalf Tyson Keats.
When Premiership Rugby found out, they came down hard on the top flight club, hitting them with a £15,000 ($22,534) fine as well as the points deduction.
The points penalty left London Welsh bottom of the Premiership and they are now five points adrift of Sale Sharks with just four league matches remaining.
But the Exiles have argued they were unaware of Scott's actions and feel the punishment against them is unduly harsh.
According to Premiership Rugby regulations, the decision is final, but Welsh are exploring all their options and Copsey maintains the decision of the three-man independent appeal panel was unfair.
Asked whether an appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport was a possibility, Copsey said: "We are still considering our position and I won't say never.
"I think we need to take stock and not discount anything. [That decision] will be made in a couple of days.
"We don't think the punishment meets the crime. Everything in the original action from the RFU was, in my view, about misconduct.
"If they had a misconduct charge against the club that is what they should have done. The club has been cleared of any of that sort of doing.
"I think a no points [deduction] situation is fair and proper."
For his part, Scott was banned for life from rugby after he admitted supplying false information, including a forged passport, to England's governing Rugby Football Union (RFU).
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